This study involved fourth grade children as co-researchers of their engaged, aesthetic reading experience. As members of the “Readers as Researchers Club,” they documented their engagement with text--how they create, enter, and sustain the story world. The children, who self-identified as avid readers, explored the activities central to their reading experience through memory work, metaphors created as part of a visual protocol, and group discussions. Visualization was critical in their construction of and participation in the world of the story. The children negotiated three dimensions of visualizing: picturing, watching, and seeing. The qualitative difference between dimensions is in the reader’s perceived location in the world of the story and the resultant visual perspective. The richness of the children’s findings highlights the importance of validating and encouraging aesthetic engagement with story in our classrooms.
Keywords: Elementary, Assessment, Literacy, Literature, Research